- Climate Disruption
- Ruggedization Overview
- How much time do we have?
- What steps to take?
- Places to move?
- Ruggedization - What it Means
- What about Prepping?
- Summary of Critical Steps
- Is there a time when there won’t be someone who doesn’t want to talk about climate change and its effects?
- Final Thoughts
Podcast: The Big Story
- Parts of the world are going to be inhabitable due to climate change.
- Where to move?
- Our instinct is to move to the countryside and ‘prep.’
- That may not be the best plan.
- Ruggedization is a term borrowed from the military.
- In the military, it describes a tool designed and built to handle extremes: weather, air pressure, heat, cold and more.
- In the context of the climate crisis, it describes readying ourselves and our cities, counties, and countries for extreme weather events.
- There are many examples of places not doing this or even pushing to move in the opposite direction.
- There are jurisdictions passing laws that are not allowing cities to consider climate change in their planning.
- Other jurisdictions are forcing insurance for everybody, although some places are just not insurable anymore.
- There are examples of places taking positive steps.
- The Netherlands has been taking systematic steps to mitigate disasters.
- New Orleans is strategically retreating from areas it cannot protect.
- Others are planting trees to cool cities and improving flood defenses.
How much time do we have?
- In some locations, the crisis is already here.
- In others, it’s just starting.
- Large parts of the earth will become embattled by weather events, and their systems are currently brittle.
What steps to take?
- The steps and speed to react depending on how bad we will allow it to get.
- When we don’t know how long we will let it go, it increases the chance we don’t know what will happen.
- The issue is there have been not just singular events but concurrent or sequential ones.
- Vancouver was at the top of the ‘safer’ list until the forest fires, followed by an atmospheric river.
- There is a severe loss of predictability, and it will only worsen.
- We need to retreat from those areas that will be hardest hit.
Places to move?
- It’s a game of odds.
- There’s no ‘safe’ place, only those places where we think we will be ‘safer.’
- Our past experiences are no longer helpful in the new climate.
- We are forced to anticipate over predicting.
- Generally, cities are better:
- They have systems in place to provide the most service to the most people.
- These places will get restored power, water, etc., first.
- The people miles away and the only house on a line out in the countryside will get service restored last.
- Review your choices
- Conduct an honest assessment of where you currently live.
- Do you live in a fire-prone area or one subjected to flooding?
- If you are in a danger zone, move.
- Many places are not going to get rebuilt.
- Improve the place where you end up.
- Avoid the places where crises’ are already happening—heat waves, droughts, flooding, etc.
- Pick a place with good bones. Sound systems provide access to steady power, water, and sanitation.
- Pick a place with wealth. Not only will your neighbors have their own money, but they will also have the connections to access public money.
- Consider the context. If it’s a place taking steps to deal with the crisis, it’s good. If it’s a place still in denial or actively working against acknowledging the climate crisis, it’s the wrong place.
- Consider your home. You have connections and local ties. These are important, and they may be more important and better for you to remain where you are than to move across the country, where you have to start over with your support network.
Ruggedization - What it Means
- We are looking for places where prospects are good, it’s prepared to prosper, and it can deal with large-scale events. Cities.
- We should not look to manage this alone but to hook into and help the systems already built around us.
- Whether you decide to move or not, prepare where you are.
- Plant trees to provide shade.
- Shade windows.
- Remove asphalt.
- Paint your house a lighter color.
- Improve how your land handles rainfall.
- Shorten the supply chains to your home.
- Get solar panels and a house battery.
- Hook into your greater community.
- Try to make your region better prepared.
What about Prepping?
- Prepping ignores the fact that many systems around us are working to keep us safe and alive.
- You are already in the wrong spot if you get to the point where you need a large quantity of ammunition to protect your food.
- Prepping is a paranoid myth.
Summary of Critical Steps
- Avoid Risk
- Minimize Risk
- Talk to People about how climate change is going to affect them.
Is there a time when there won’t be someone who doesn’t want to talk about climate change and its effects?
- Lack of talking about the crisis has led to climate anxiety and grief.
- People who won’t talk about it have been the work of organizations working at the predatory delay.
- Unfortunately, we are unprepared for the change that has already happened, much less for what is coming.
The Snap Forward on Substack - Alex’s newsletter.